Up 1,151 this week

Smilin' Through (1941)

Passed  -  Musical | War | Fantasy  -  October 1941 (USA)
Your rating:
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 -/10 X  
Ratings: 6.6/10 from 221 users  
Reviews: 11 user | 3 critic

John Carteret has long been depressed and lonely, because, at his wedding years ago, his bride, Moonyean, was murdered. He accepts into his house Kathleen, the 5 year old orphaned niece of ... See full summary »



(screen play), (screen play), 4 more credits »
0Check in

Editors' Spotlight

Sundance 2015

Watch our IMDb & AIV Sundance Studio Interviews with Keith Simanton

User Lists

Related lists from IMDb users

a list of 877 titles
created 13 Apr 2012
a list of 2770 titles
created 13 Apr 2012
a list of 10000 titles
created 26 Jun 2012
a list of 499 titles
created 30 Jul 2013
a list of 5334 titles
created 5 months ago

Related Items

Search for "Smilin' Through" on

Connect with IMDb

Share this Rating

Title: Smilin' Through (1941)

Smilin' Through (1941) on IMDb 6.6/10

Want to share IMDb's rating on your own site? Use the HTML below.

Take The Quiz!

Test your knowledge of Smilin' Through.


Learn more

People who liked this also liked... 

    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.7/10 X  

A beautiful young concert pianist is torn between her attraction to her arrogant but brilliant maestro and her love for a farm boy she left back home.

Director: Frank Borzage
Stars: Philip Dorn, Catherine McLeod, Bill Carter
The Firefly (1937)
Certificate: Passed History | Musical | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  

Nina Maria Azara is the beautiful and alluring singing spy for Spain during the Napoleonic Wars. Her mission is to seduce French Officers, in order for them to reveal Napolean's intentions ... See full summary »

Director: Robert Z. Leonard
Stars: Jeanette MacDonald, Allan Jones, Warren William
Certificate: Passed Drama | Music | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6/10 X  

Mary Hale (a singer) and Jimmy Seymour (pianist/composer), are a show biz couple working in The Big Apple in small night clubs hoping to hit it big. One night, Larry Bryant (a Broadway ... See full summary »

Director: Robert Z. Leonard
Stars: Jeanette MacDonald, Lew Ayres, Ian Hunter
China Doll (1958)
Drama | War | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.9/10 X  

American pilot Cliff Brandon, fighting the Japanese in China, finds himself the unintentional "owner" of a Chinese housekeeper, Shu-Jen. The unlikely couple falls in love and marries, but not without tragedy brought on by the war.

Director: Frank Borzage
Stars: Victor Mature, Li Hua Li, Ward Bond
Certificate: Passed Drama | Romance | War
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  

London based American nurse, Lady Susan Ashwood, is at the hospital awaiting the imminent arrival of injured soldiers. She is hoping that her enlisted son, Sir John Ashwood II, who ... See full summary »

Director: Clarence Brown
Stars: Irene Dunne, Alan Marshal, Roddy McDowall
Drama | Musical
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7/10 X  

In order to avoid a prearranged marriage, a rebellious French princess sheds her identity and escapes to colonial New Orleans, where she finds an unlikely true love.

Directors: Robert Z. Leonard, W.S. Van Dyke
Stars: Jeanette MacDonald, Nelson Eddy, Frank Morgan
Certificate: Passed Comedy | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  

Seeking US citizenship, a Viennese refugee arranges a marriage of convenience with a struggling writer.

Director: Clarence Brown
Stars: James Stewart, Hedy Lamarr, Ian Hunter
Comedy | Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.5/10 X  

An actor, Paul Orman, is accidentally told that his new, custom made tail coat has been cursed and it will bring misfortune to all who wear it. As the 4 succeeding wearers of the coat ... See full summary »

Director: Julien Duvivier
Stars: Charles Boyer, Rita Hayworth, Ginger Rogers
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.5/10 X  
Director: Sidney Franklin
Stars: Norma Talmadge, Wyndham Standing, Harrison Ford
Certificate: Passed Drama | War
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.3/10 X  

A rookie flyer, Ens. Alan Drake, joins the famous Hellcats Squadron right out of flight school in Pensacola. He doesn't make a great first impression when he is forced to ditch his airplane... See full summary »

Director: Frank Borzage
Stars: Robert Taylor, Ruth Hussey, Walter Pidgeon
Bitter Sweet (1940)
Certificate: Passed Drama | Musical | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.4/10 X  

In order to avoid an arranged marriage with a man she doesn't love, Sarah Millick runs off to Vienna with her music teacher, Carl Linden, whom she does love. They are married. In Vienna, ... See full summary »

Director: W.S. Van Dyke
Stars: Jeanette MacDonald, Nelson Eddy, George Sanders
Strange Cargo (1940)
Certificate: Passed Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.9/10 X  

Convicts escaping from Devil's Island come under the influence of a strange Christ-like figure.

Director: Frank Borzage
Stars: Clark Gable, Joan Crawford, Ian Hunter


Complete credited cast:
Gene Raymond ...
Kenneth 'Ken' Wayne / Jeremy 'Jerry' Wayne
Ian Hunter ...
Frances Robinson ...
Patrick O'Moore ...
Eric Lonsdale ...
Charles, Kenneth's Batman
Jackie Horner ...
David Clyde ...
Frances Carson ...
Ruth Rickaby ...


John Carteret has long been depressed and lonely, because, at his wedding years ago, his bride, Moonyean, was murdered. He accepts into his house Kathleen, the 5 year old orphaned niece of Moonyean, and she quickly grows up to look just like her aunt. Kathleen meets and falls in love with a mysterious stranger from America, Kenneth Wayne. When John hears of this he is furious, and we learn that it was Kenneth's father, Jeremy, who had killed Moonyean years before. John carries his grudge against Jeremy to the new generation, and threatens to ruin his niece's happiness, but he softens in the end. Written by John Oswalt <>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Jeanette MacDonald and husband Gene Raymond in their only screen collaboration! Their eyes met...and they knew they were meant for each other!


Passed | See all certifications »




Release Date:

October 1941 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Catene del passato  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

(Western Electric Sound System)



Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


Oliver T. Marsh was to be director of photography but died of a heart attack on 5 May 1941. It is unclear if he actually did any filming. See more »


Kenneth: There's only one thing missing from this picnic. Don't you have any ants in England?
Kathleen: I have some in Ireland, but I never hear from them.
See more »


Referenced in You Can't Fool a Camera (1941) See more »


Smilin' Through
(1918) (uncredited)
Written by Arthur A. Penn
Played during the opening credits and as background music often
Sung by Jeanette MacDonald in the flashback scene and danced to by Jeanette MacDonald and Brian Aherne
Reprised offscreen by Jeanette MacDonald at the end
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

Through time, dimension, and space
25 March 2006 | by (Buffalo, New York) – See all my reviews

It seems to be a general consensus on the board that this version is the inferior of the Norma Shearer-Leslie Howard-Fredric March version previously done by MGM a decade before. Without having seen that one, my guess is that is probably correct because those are all better players.

I was surprised to learn that originally Jeanette was given her choice of leading men as she was in San Francisco and picked Gable and Tracy for their parts. For Smilin' Through she originally had as her choices James Stewart and Robert Taylor. Then both dropped out and Jeanette had to settle for the B team.

The Jeanette MacDonald/Nelson Eddy joint biography by Sharon Rich which is the source of that information doesn't say which parts Taylor and Stewart were to play. But it's sure interesting to speculate who was to play John Carteret and who was to play Jeremy/Kenneth Wayne.

So Jeanette did the film with Brian Aherne and her husband Gene Raymond. Smilin' Through created no public demand for a reteaming of Mr.&Mrs. Raymond.

Smilin' Through was written by and starred Jane Cowl on Broadway. Jane, Norma, and Jeanette play Kathleen and her aunt Moonyean. Moonyean was the love of John Carteret and was killed literally at the church altar on her wedding day by a jealous suitor Jeremy Wayne. Years later her niece Kathleen comes to live with her aunt's brokenhearted fiancé Carteret. And wouldn't you know it, she falls in love with Kenneth Wayne, son of the homicidal Jeremy.

One thing though that neither Jane Cowl or Norma Shearer could bring to the dual part was Jeanette MacDonald's soprano. The musical gene was passed down in this family if the homicidal one wasn't passed down in the Wayne family. Jeanette sings some wonderful standards identified with the British Isles like the title song, Drink to Me Only With Thine Eyes, The Kerry Dance, There's a Long Long Trail a Winding, and Just a Little Love, a Little Kiss. But my favorite is Land of Hope and Glory sung at a church service here and marched to by thousands of graduating classes on both sides of the Atlantic.

If Jeanette's acting wasn't up to snuff, there wasn't anything wrong with her singing voice. But perhaps maybe only her fans should be looking to watch Smilin' Through.

13 of 17 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Message Boards

Recent Posts
Music in the movie Ross-Durham
Discuss Smilin' Through (1941) on the IMDb message boards »

Contribute to This Page

Create a character page for: